Business Intelligence & Analytics

Organisations begin to realise, that the growing amounts of data could lead to better decisions and new insights. The main focus is on internal data, but also external data can be used for this purpose. Business Intelligence can be described as a set of applications, infrastructure, tools and procedures to access, curate, and analyse data, in order to improve decision making and optimise or improve execution.
Since 2016, Business Intelligence is shifting from a solely IT-driven activity to a more Business driven one. This means that the centre of attention is shifting from central BI systems to systems that provide all users the ability to analyse data in order to inform their decision making.

Business Intelligence can be employed at different levels: descriptive, explanatory, predictive, and prescriptive. BI at a descriptive level, focuses on representing data in a way that facilitates interpretation. On the other end, we have prescriptive analysis, were analyses and the decision are left to the system. Examples of the latter are emergency stops in factories or websites with automated dynamic pricing. Due to the rise of explanatory, predictive and prescriptive BI, recently, the term Business Intelligence & Analytics is coined.

What defines successful BI&A usage?

Organisations have staggering amounts of data available. BI systems are becoming user-friendly, and an increasing number of organisations start to realise the potential BI&A might offer. However, implementation is more often adamant. Through involvement during implementation, the BI&A research group aims to identify best practices and generalise pearls and pitfalls. 

The new business employee

It is held, that to be successful as a future manager, controller, key account manager, of HR officer, partly depends on the ability to analyse data. Future practitioners will need to able to process and analyse data, relevant to their own domain. Gartner Group has earmarked workers that fit this description as Citizen Data Scientists, and postulated that they will be at the centre of future organisational success. The BI&A research group develops and offers courses and training, for both practice and education.


Hans Dekker Researcher